How Towers of Hanoi Works

Author's Note

My favorite puzzles involve patterns, which is why I looked forward to solving the Towers of Hanoi. As I attempted a trial run at relocating the disks, the solution was just out of reach -- like a word I couldn't quite recall. I wasn't ready to read the answer key, which spelled out step-by-step moves, so I set the game aside. And, like most puzzlers, the answer became clearer as I gained distance from the problem. As I braided my daughter's hair, the pattern presented itself: I moved strands of hair from A to C, then to B and back to A. Sometimes the best connections come unexpectedly.

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